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Quit while you’re a-head

November 23, 2014

If you are only into feel-good stories – look away.

DSCN0475A recent gruesome discovery up on the hill behind the house was the fresh body of an Eastern Grey Kangaroo (Macropus giganteus) joey minus its head and right arm. It was hard to imagine any predator killing such a large creature – the Flowerdale panther perhaps! Later in the day the pictures from a remote motion-sensing camera situated at the back of the property revealed a Red Fox (Vulpes vulpes) wandering past with a kangaroo head clasped in its jaws. The fox in question has been observed every day following the same route in front of the camera.

Foxes are omnivores meaning that they will eat both meat and vegetable IMG_0239matter. Fox scats around our place clearly show that berries and insects are part of its diet. It is also known that foxes eat birds and small mammals. Even after they are not hungry, foxes will continue to hunt, often burying food in caches under leaves or underground.

So many questions still remain. Did the fox kill the joey or did it opportunistically scavenge the body? If it didn’t kill the joey, what did? In the photo, was the fox going to feed its young or add to a food bank? I’ll probably never know.

Nature is not all butterflies and flowers!

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